Himachal Pradesh is providing mojor boost to natural farming in with an aim to become a pioneer in the field by 2022.
Thousands of farmers, particularly the women, have adopted the Subhash Palekar Prakritik Kheti Khushhal Kisan scheme under the state government by growing vegetables and other crops through natural farming -- both individually and by forming self-help groups.
A total of 2,664 gram panchayats out of 3,226 have been covered under scheme. So far, 44,325 farmers have been provided training on natural farming. Out of them, 39,124 farmers have adopted natural farming on approximately 1,650 hectares.
The entire Pangna village in Karsog area of Mandi district has been involved in organic vegetable production.
Also, Ghaini village in Shimla district is the first panchayat where women have formed the Village Organisation Himalaya Institute for growing organic vegetables.
According to Promila Thakur, secretary of self-help group Jai Maa Kanak Dhara in Ghani panchayat, 80 women of various villages are associated with this group and engaged in growing organic vegetables.
The group was formed under the Ajivika Mission Yojna and the Agriculture Department provides training and guidance from time to time.
Two youngsters -- Harinder and Arjun Atri -- from Nahan block in Sirmaur district are growing wheat, gram and garlic.
They create videos of their farming techniques and upload them on the social media platforms like YouTube so that they can reach out to farmers for educating them with organic farming techniques.
Similarly, Jasvinder Kaur's family from the Paonta block in Sirmaur has adopted the organic farming and growing vegetables and cereals on almost seven bighas.
Sher Singh from Gambalpur, Sanjiv and Sohan Lal from Dharampur block in Solan district have adopted the natural farming of cauliflower and garlic.
Manjit Singh from Una district resigned from his job as an information technology engineer and started growing vegetables by setting up a polyhouse. Today he has become an inspiration for the youth of the district.
Almost 28 horticulturists from the Banjaar valley of Kullu district have transformed their orchards into organic farming fields.
Farmers of Darot village in Bhoranj block of Hamirpur district are growing wheat, gram and peas on approximately 12 hectares by adopting organic farming and have successfully strengthened their economy.
Surat Ram from the Chopal block, Anil Kumar from Chirgaon, Subhash Chauhan from Rohru, Sandip Kumar from Theog, all in Shimla district, have shifted from apple cultivation towards growing green vegetables.
The government is providing various facilities to farmers for adopting natural farming. It is providing 50 per cent grant, to the farmers to buy cow. To collect cow urine Rs 8,000 are being provided for building floors in the cow-shed besides three plastic drums for preparing manure.
Agriculture Minister Ram Lal Markanda said the state has set a target to involve all 9.61 lakh farmers in natural farming.
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